UPPER EAST SIDE — Chef David Burke's new restaurant takes flavor to the next level with a dining area enclosed in brick walls made of pink Himalayan sea salt.
Tavern62 opened over the weekend in a townhouse at 135 E. 62nd St., with 135 seats scattered across two floors, including a bar and a solarium on the upper level.
In one corner is a semi-private dining area with back-lighting that makes the pink salt walls around it glow. The rest of the restaurant is adorned with Burke's own art collection, including a vintage Bugatti race car model that hovers over the bar on the first floor.
"Our inspiration for creating the space was largely built on the idea of paying tribute to old New York and making it a dining destination, whether you are visiting from out of town or you live in the neighborhood," Burke said in a statement.
The tavern-style restaurant serves a twist on pub classics like its "duck duck duck" dish, made with the fowl prepared in three different ways. The menu also features a seaweed-soaked chicken served with baby bok choy for $32, octopus carpaccio for $16, roasted branzino for $33 and Kobe steak frites for $36.
(Photo credit: of Mikey Pozarik)
For dessert, diners can order a waffle cake for two that arrives at the table in a waffle iron, and is topped with whipped cream, vanilla ice cream, Heath Bar crunch and toffee sauce.
Other sweets include house-made pies and cheesecake pops garnished with raspberry bubble gum whipped cream.
Side dishes like "Thai fries" with "heavenly beef," and "Millionaire's Mac & Cheese" made with shrimp, lobster and black truffle will also be served.
Diners can wash it all down with something from Tavern62's curated wine list, or its beers and specialty cocktails.
Burke is widely known for his appearances on "Iron Chef" and "Chef Masters" TV shows. He ran restaurant Fishtail by David Burke in the same townhouse for about a decade, before it closed earlier this year, according to Eater New York.
"We think diners will enjoy the signature touches we have woven into the concept, from our modern tavern fare to the custom artwork and top-of-the line service,” Burke said.
Tavern62 is open Sunday through Thursday, 5 to 10 p.m., and Friday and Saturday, from 5 to 10:30 p.m., and there are plans to open for lunch and brunch in coming weeks, according to a restaurant spokeswoman.